Retailers expect holiday shopping boost

In this file photo, people shop in Paddock Mall as they search for bargains on Black Friday in Ocala on Nov. 27, 2020. [Bruce Ackerman/Ocala Gazette]
According to the Florida Retail Federation, the state’s retailers expect record sales this holiday season, with increases of about 10 percent over 2020.

The industry group said the average consumer is expected to spend $998 on gifts over the next month and a half. The sales expectations come at the same time that the country grapples with supply-chain problems.

Florida Retail Federation President Scott Shalley said most stores had planned ahead, but some items, such as electronics, could be challenging to find as the holidays get closer.

“If you get the opportunity, and there is an item you really have got to have, and you find it, I would go ahead and get it,” Shalley said. “We don’t anticipate widespread shortages, but there certainly will be some items that aren’t as easily found on the shelves.”

The holiday shopping season is the most significant time of the year for stores, which make 20 to 40 percent of their annual sales during the month before Christmas.

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